SUNSCAPE is meant to convey the sweeping grandeur of the Grand Canyon State. Arizona is a collection of many colorful and diverse cultures, however, each culture holds in common a deep love for the spectacular landscape of the area. Despite the diversity of landforms and ecosystems, all life in the state is dominated by an intense solar presence which is absolutely fundamental to its character. Each vision of Arizona, whether desert, mountain, canyon, or lake is, indeed, a sunscape.
Paintings of Arizona are often done in silkscreen; it is a land of multiple horizons. The counterpoint of landforms is represented in the music by a counterpoint of musical ideas of different shapes and sizes, some sharp and angular, and some broad and sweeping.
The work was commissioned by the Arizona Diamond Jubilee Commission for Arizona’s seventy-fifth birthday as a state. It was first performed in November of 1987 by the Phoenix Symphony, with Harold Weller conducting, at Phoenix Symphony Hall.